LA gets blown out by Suns

The Los Angeles Lakers have already been shorthanded ever since Anthony Davis went down with a foot injury on Friday against the Denver Nuggets.

But shortly before tip-off on Monday versus the Phoenix Suns, they got the news that LeBron James, Russell Westbrook and Austin Reaves wouldn’t be available either.

It didn’t take having a Ph.D. in basketball science for one to expect an ugly outing for LA, especially on the road and on the second night of a back-to-back set.

After it took a brief first-quarter lead, the game got away from it, and it never really mounted a serious challenge. The Suns took a 38-24 lead at the end of the first quarter and a 68-44 advantage at halftime, which led to a 130-104 rout.

Troy Brown Jr.: D+

The Lakers needed everyone to step up offensively to have a shot against Phoenix, but Brown didn’t do so. He took just one shot, which he made, and he scored just three points with two rebounds, one steal and one assist in 21 minutes.

Thomas Bryant: B+

Bryant continued his fine play offensively by shooting 6-of-12 from the field to score 16 points. He also hit 2-of-5 from 3-point range, and it looks like he may be regaining the long-range accuracy that allowed him to shoot over 40 percent from downtown in back-to-back seasons not too long ago.

But the Lakers needed more than the five rebounds they got from Bryant in 27 minutes. They got outrebounded 51-38, and they gave up 15 offensive rebounds to Phoenix.

Patrick BeverleyB

Beverley did a solid job offensively, going 4-of-8 to score nine points while adding three assists. However, he couldn’t do much to slow down the Suns’ guards defensively, as Chris Paul had 28 points on 9-of-18 shooting and Damion Lee hit 5-of-10 from downtown.

Dennis Schroder: A+

Schroder did about all he could to give LA a shot in this one. He went 12-of-19 overall while hitting both of his 3-point attempts, and he finished with 30 points, four rebounds and four assists.

Even after Davis returns, the Lakers will need Schroder to be more aggressive and efficient offensively on a consistent basis.

Lonnie Walker IV:B-

Walker was just 5-of-13 from the field, but he did hit half of his six 3-point attempts, as well as all three of his free throws. But the Lakers needed more than the 16 points he scored in 30 minutes.

Wenyen GabrielB

Gabriel returned to the lineup after missing the last seven games with a shoulder injury. In 27 minutes he grabbed six rebounds and scored four points on 2-of-5 shooting.

Damian Jones: B+

Jones scored just three points in 22 minutes, but his effort and activity defensively and on the boards were impressive. He had seven rebounds and three blocked shots, as he gave the Lakers qualities that were in short supply on Monday.

Jones’ playing time has been sporadic this season, but it’s starting to become clear that he can provide serviceable production for about 10-15 minutes a game.

Kendrick NunnA

Nunn is another Laker who has gotten sporadic playing time this year, but when he has been left out on the court by head coach Darvin Ham for lengthy stints, he has gotten warm.

On Monday, he was 6-of-12 overall and 3-of-6 from beyond the arc to give him 17 points in 20 minutes.

Nunn has been mentioned in trade rumors latelyand if the Lakers do deal him in order to shore up their weaknesses, he still has plenty of value to provide another team.

Scotty Pippen Jr.: C-

Pippen finally got on the court for the Lakers for the first time since Nov. 7.

He had been playing very well in the G League lately, but he was relatively ineffective on Monday, hitting just 1-of-5 from the floor and ending the contest with four points, two rebounds, one assist, one steal and one blocked shot in 15 minutes.

Max Christie: C-

Christie had a bad offensive night, as he missed all but one of his nine shots and all three of his trey attempts. But his effort defensively and on the boards seems to be a constant, and it led to six rebounds in 27 minutes.

Story originally appeared on LeBron Wire

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